Thinking of creating your very own herb garden? There are countless benefits to having your own stock of delicious herbs. Never again will you curse yourself for not picking up some basil for that recipe! And growing herbs is so easy that it will feel like cheating.
As well as adding great flavour to your meals, nurturing and caring for plants can have positive mental health benefits, not to mention the feeling of accomplishment when you see those first leaves appearing. Here are some tips on getting started and maintaining a flourishing herb garden.
The first consideration in how to grow a herb garden is location. Herb gardens are great because they’re so versatile - whether inside or out, the plants will grow. No matter where they sit, ensure that the plants are growing in well-draining soil, normally with a compost mix to provide extra nutrients. As much sunlight and water as possible are ideal for most herbs, so consider that when you’re planning your herb garden layout.
Inside: If you have no outside space, a sunny windowsill or corner will be a great place to grow your plants. It’s important to make sure that the inside spot gets plenty of sunshine and that the pot allows for excess water to drain - you don’t want to drown your herbs. Plus, if you choose to create an inside garden, herbs can grow year-round as they’re not affected by fluctuations in weather and temperature.
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Outside: An outside spot will provide you herbs with more space to grow and the outside conditions typically grow herbs with stronger flavours. When choosing a location, consider how sheltered the plants will be from wind, how much sunlight they will receive and also how convenient it is for you to collect - after all, they’re there to be used!
What you decide to grow is entirely up to you. Personal preference is a huge aspect, so grow what you want to eat. If there is a particular herb that you buy and use frequently, this is a great addition to your garden. Here are some popular choices:
If you enjoy having plants around the house, read our blog detailing some of the benefits to having more houseplants.
When you have chosen your favourite herbs for your herb garden, it’s time to get growing. A little research is important here as to whether they will grow best from seeds or baby plants. Plants like mint and rosemary will grow well from cuttings, so asking around your friends and family is a quick and cheap way to begin growing.
Some herbs grow faster than others and patience is a key part of growing any plant. If you have chosen a good location with the right conditions for your plants, this will speed up the growing process and improve the flavour of your herbs. Most of the plants mentioned here are hardy and will actually improve from you taking cuttings, so don’t be worried about damaging them too much. When your herbs are big enough, feel free to use them as much as you like!
If you need a reminder of your Autumn to-do list in your garden as Summer draws to an end, check out our blog.